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Sorry Folks, Vegas Is Closed

By Chuckmonster on Wednesday, 4th March 2009 3:38pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 11


What would you do if Las Vegas closed? Aside from the obvious Griswoldian knee jerk punching of the metaphorical 'moose' what would you do? Visit your local tribal casino or gambling boat? Go to AC/Reno/Tahoe/Tunica/Biloxi? Or is this recession so deep that you aren't gambling at all.

There's been a bunch of talk in the financial analyst circles about the possibility of some Las Vegas casinos closing temporarily to help trim costs during the economic melt down. One name bandied about has been the Imperial Palace, a theory quickly debunked by Harrah's PR squad.

But seriously, what would you do if your favorite joint - Venetian, LV Hilton, El Cortez or any point between decided that it was better for them to close, than to welcome your business?

We watch his program, we buy his toys, we go to his movies, he owes us! Doesn't he owe us? Huh? He owes the Griswolds, right? Fuckin' a right he owes us!

The casino business is recession-proof, isn't it? We gamble when we've got money and gamble when we don't? The power of 'what if' trumps the realities of 'oh shit.' Right? Fuckin' a right it does.

Right now, the Vegas casino biz is teetering tottering with disaster, set atop a fulcrum built from hyperextended debt loads and consumer fear. What exactly will happen should the weight of disaster catapult the casinos skyward? Will the entire casino business could go belly up, leaving the wreckage of buffets, ultralounges, poker rooms and half-built casino resorts strewn across the desert floor a la the dotcom blowout during the last stock market bust?

This used to be real estate
Now it's only fields and trees
Once there were parking lots
Now it's a peaceful oasis
This was a Pizza Hut
Now it's all covered with daisies
I miss the honky tonks,
Dairy Queens, and 7-Elevens
And as things fell apart
Nobody paid much attention

Don't leave me stranded here, I can't get used to this lifestyle.



Comments & Discussion:

Don't worry, baby... we'll always have Macau.

Well, as shocking as it might be to many of you, gambling was never the draw to me for to Las Vegas. In fact I live just 10 miles from one of the largest casinos in the country, and I haven't visited it, for several years now. My attraction to Vegas, is the amazing resorts, the great places to eat, and the wonderful entertainment. Now for obvious reasons, Vegas is able to supply many of these features, better than about any other place in world, for the least amount of money. They do this by offsetting their resort cost, with the casino. Besides the entertainment aspect, I can find many of the aspects I look for in a ultimate vacation spot, in several other places. But since the places don't have a casino, they cost rises significantly. So I guess to answer your question, if Vegas closed tomorrow, I'd just look for other world class resorts, with world class amenities. If these resorts had a casino, that would be a small bonus, but if they didn't that's fine also. I think value is what Las Vegas was built on, but the last several years value has left, and for most people, they left with it. Vegas has so much competition, and as the prices have risen, people have found other places to spend their money, and particularly now, with the economy, people are trying to get even more for their money. I think Wynn is a great place, but I think the biggest problem with Vegas right now, is everyone started chasing Wynn, and Vegas cannot support 10 Wynns. The town has gotten to much high end room inventory, and FB and CC will only make that situation worse. Lastly, I think people including myself would turn to the cruise industry, more if Vegas closed. Cruises, are an incredible value, especially once you consider, that all of your food is included. Is cruise food as good as SW, No, but its way better than most people are used to eating on a regular basis.

A world without Vegas? Perish the thought. I'm not sure where I would go. Maybe AC but it's a long flight. A couple of more casinos and Palm Springs could be the new hot spot

I have three nights in a free room at IP on November. If they do shut down, should I complain to Harrah's have try to get them to put me up somewhere else. Ultimately, what recourse would I have short of paying for a room somewhere else?

Not being cheap but I wouldn't have overpaid slightly for my flight if I thought my free room would cease to exist when I got there.

I'm thinking if the big daddy of em all VEGAS can't survive the economy, then Tunica/AC/Biloxi shouldn't be able to either.
I'm going out there at the end of the year and while I think Vegas WON'T be closed, the service will be trimmed and probably suck balls.

And like BrianFey said, gambling has never really been the draw for me either. I go out there to party, and drink 24/7 and just be myself and forget about bills, work, and everything associated with everyday life.
I love that town.

It appears that even the mighty MGM is having trouble. Talk of debt default is surfacing. I agree with RockChick. This is the place to leave the world behind. We love it. Most of these hotels should have the power to survive or be taken over.

The bondholders are going to force most of the companies into bankruptcy and take ownership of the properties. They will have to keep the newer properties open to have any chance at getting their money back, but I think a number of the older properties will indeed close. The bondholders biggest problem is they need to retain knowledgeable and licensed executives to run the places. It should be interesting to see which big players/personalities are forced out (e.g. Fertittas, Kerkorian, Adelson) and who they are replaced with. It looks like FB, Cosmo, Aria, Hard Rock and Mandarin will have to be finished and opened. I have doubts about Vdara, Harmon, Veer, and PH Towers even opening in the next couple years. They will probably follow what Caesar's is doing - finish the exterior and wait. It may be five or more years before Echelon and PZ suites are finished.

I actually would not be surprised if some of the casinos start mothballing floors in the hotel towers, further cut back on retail and dining hours, and even go as far as to close off entire sections of casino floors. I wouldn't be surprised if some casinos shutter their poker rooms and send poker players to neighboring properties (For example, does Harrah's need poker rooms in every hotel? Cut the number of them in half, leaving rooms at the properties where they are the most popular.). I also would not be surprised if more and more properties farm out some of the back of the house stuff. Instead of Jay in Las Vegas taking your reservation, it will be Vijay in Mumbai. Your room service order is not taken in the kitchen of the hotel, rather in some windowless office somewhere not in Las Vegas (there are some fast food chains whose drive through order boxes are not manned by someone who is inside the building).

How long before the restaurants start cutting back on the portions on their meals (Considering the portion size at many restaurants today, they could easily cut the portion size and the diner will still be full.)?

mmmm no Vegas..... I'd cry

hmmmm I guess it would have to be Wally World!!

Aren't some resorts in Primm closing the hotel portion mid-week already?

I would think that before a whole resort would close down, they would first scale it back. By that I mean close down 1/2 or 1/3 of the hotel floors, close off portions of the casino or even just remove some table games. In other words, scale things back, along with scaling back staffing.

Or the Casinos could convert their full time dealers to part-time, keeping the same number of employees, but cutting their hours to 20 per week instead of 40. That way they can cut out the benefits a full time employee would get.

What really would be the killer is if the LV Convention Center loses any more big conventions. Conventions are what bring people in and the convention trade is really shrinking.

Last thought: Would the country really be that bad off if the whole Casino business industry went away? After all, what socially redeeming quality does it give our society?

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